The FCC's Media Bureau is soliciting comment on a
petition by the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood for a declaratory
ruling that Nicktoons' upcoming Zevo-3
series--scheduled to debut next month--is a program-length commercial in
violation of FCC ad limits.
CCFC says it is in violation because the show
features characters originally developed by shoe manufacturer Skechers USA to
promote the sale of its shoes to kids,
which makes the show a program-length commercial, says CCFC.
The FCC has historically applied its
program-length commercial definition to kids shows that feature ads for a
product within a show featuring a character associated with it, for example, an
ad for GI Joe dolls within a GI Joe cartoon show.
The FCC has given interested parties until
Oct. 22 to file comments and Nov. 8 to file replies.
"[W]e do not believe that the show is a program-length commercial, nor do we agree that its transmission would violate the Children's Television Act or any of the Commission's rules or policies," said Nicktoons in a statement.